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Now here is an issue that Al Gore and others should be more concerned about then global warming. I am going to list a whole bunch of statistics here but I think they are worth staring at for a while. This is seriously provoking me to the place of intercession for those who truly have no voice in the world today. I would suggest you take a few minuets out of your busy day to read these statistics.
This list does not even begin to scratch the surface. I think after reading a bit about it you will see that Human trafficking is a bit more important then the global warming.
This subject hits pretty close to home for me. As many of you know I spent a year in Africa before coming to IHOP. In Africa one of my many responsibilities was to help lead our weekly ministry to the prostitutes. Twice a week we would take a truck down to the inner city and bring loads of bread and would hold a church service. I became good friends with those girls over that year. It was weird walking down the streets of Maputo and having a group of prostitutes yell your name out as you walked around the corner. Talk about dirty looks from the on lookers! I think they enjoyed talking to us because for once in their lives someone actually cared about them and did not look at them as objects.
Some things still haunt me though to this day from those church services. I remember on a weekly basis sitting in those church services worshiping Jesus with the broken and hurting of the world. When suddenly a white pick up truck or a BMW would pull up around the corner. In the car would be a couple of men and suddenly we would loose two or three of the girls in our church service. What really got to me was seeing the young girls, 12 or 13, leave the church service to go of and do their “job.” On a weekly basis I would wittennes child prostitution first hand. I remember feeling helpless as I sat in the dirt with tears running down my face. Girls who were so innocent at times were having their purity and innocence taking from them on a daily basis. This is the only life they knew. To them it was natural, to them it was what their mothers had done for years before them. This was life for them on a daily basis.
I still to this day remember their faces and pray for them on a daily basis. I pray for the countless of street children whom I became friends with as well over the time I was there. I pray that in the midst of great darkness and hopelessness they would encounter the love of Jesus Christ. I pray that they, the weakest and the most broken of the earth would arise from the ashes and become some of the mightiest men and women to ever walk the face of the earth. I pray that they would walk in such goldiness and such humility that the earth would not be worthy of them.
Ill write more later on this. Its too hard to write more right now. Back to the facts. Read them, dwell on them, let them stir you to intercession, the only answer for these lost children of the world.
Here are the facts, true facts that can not be disputed:
1) The International Labour Organization estimates there are 218 million working children aged between five and 17 (2006)
2) 126 million are estimated to work in the worst forms of child labour — one in every 12 of the world’s five to 17 years olds (2006)
3) 74 million children under 15 are in hazardous work and should be “immediately withdrawn from this work” (2006)
4) 8.4 million children are in slavery, trafficking, debt bondage and other forms of forced labour, forced recruitment for armed conflict, prostitution, pornography and other illicit activities.
5) There are around 3000 enslaved Albanian children used for begging and cleaning windows and cars without payment in Italy and Greece.
6) An estimated 496,000 children are in slavery in Bangladesh.
7) Over 10-20 million people are subjected to debt bondage largely in India, Bolivia, Brazil, Peru and Philippines.
8) Of 35 million soccer balls stitched in Pakistan, children produce one quarter of the balls, most of them as bonded servants.
9) Nearly 500,000 minors work in virtual slavery conditions in Senegal.
10) “Restavek” the practice of sending children to serve as unpaid domestic labour for more affluent city dwellers exist in the country of Haiti. UNICEF estimated that 25,000 to 300,000 children, 85% of them girls, are victims of this practice.
11) Information gathered by the British charity, Christian Aid, and reported by Reuters, indicates that up to 10,000 children between ages 6 and 14 are enslaved in brothels in Sri Lanka.
12) There are no universally accepted figures for the number of bonded child labourers in India. However, in the carpet industry alone, human rights organisations estimate that there may be as many as 300,000 children working, many of them under conditions that amount to bonded labour.
13) Some NGOs estimate that the number of bonded labourers in India is 5 million persons. However, in a report released during the year, Human Rights Watch estimated that 40 million persons, including 15 million children, are bonded labourers. The report notes that the majority of bonded labourers are Dalits, and that bondage is passed from one generation to the next.
14) 90% of the 100,000 women in prostitution in Bombay, India, are indentured slaves.
15) Persons sometimes are sold into virtual slavery. Many boys from India, some of whom are as young as 4 years, end up as riders in camel races in West Asia and the Gulf States, especially to the United Arab Emirates, or begging during the Haj. Girls and women end up either as domestic workers or sex workers.
16) It takes up to 15 years for girls held in prostitution via debt-bondage in India to purchase their freedom.
17) The number of street children worldwide is almost impossible to know, although the WorldHealth Organization (WHO) and UNICEF in the mid ’90s estimated the number to be 100million.
18) The social phenomenon of street children is increasing as the world’s population grows; sixout of ten urban dwellers are expected to be under 18 years of age by the year 2005
19) According to UNICEF, there are about 25 million street children in Asia and an estimated 10million in Africa (1998).
20) Africa today has 10.7 million orphans just as a result of AIDS and the numbers are growing(UNAIDS). With fewer and fewer family members left to care for them, many–if not most–of these children will join the street children of Africa who are already there because of poverty, wars and ethnic conflicts
21) In the Philippines, the Department of Social Welfare and Development estimated, in 1991,1.2 million street children. Action International Ministries says 50,000 to 70,000 streetchildren live in Manila alone.
22) India’s Ministry of Social Welfare estimated that of the 10.9 million people residing inCalcutta in 1992, there were 75,000 to 200,000 children living in the streets. Agencies agree the number is much higher now, and deaths of parents from HIV/AIDS are likely to cause the numbers to rise more rapidly.